Friday, August 08, 2008

A question of cannabis.

"Gardai yesterday seized over €500,000 worth of drugs at a number of rented houses being used as DIY cannabis factories.

Landlords were warned last night to be vigilant after gardai uncovered the scheme and arrested three Vietnamese nationals who are believed to have been used to house-sit the plants.

Criminals were using three separate houses in two neighbouring counties to grow cannabis crops.

An intelligence-driven search operation led gardai to properties in Stokestown and Lisacul, both in Co Roscommon, and a house in Drumlish, Co Longford, early yesterday.

Gardai wore protective clothing as they entered the house and found thousands of euro worth of cannabis, specialised growing equipment, fertilisers and heat lamps."

There's a debate on Newstalk at the mo, about cannabis. I'll try condense it into a question.

If a person was to grow their own plant/plants, say in a green house or under the stairs, or in a conservatory, purely for their own personal use, ought it be made legal?

Should growing cannabis for personal use be made legal?
don't know free polls



Anonymous sheepworrier said...

I'm all for legalisation, but that particular scenario would be impossible to police. If we're going down that road it should be fully legalised with licensed vendors.

10:20 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

You reckon? it probably woudl be hard to police. Although I don't smoke but I know a few folk who do and I think they'd do exactly that, grow a plant or two, dry 'em out and just smoke that for the year.

10:23 a.m.  
Blogger PI said...

I'm voting no. I know not all people who smoke cannabis graduate to hard drugs but almost everybody on hard drugs started on cannabis. There is evidence of brain damage and from what I know about mental illness it is just too big a risk.

10:54 a.m.  
Anonymous Cate said...

Interesting PI.

11:02 a.m.  
Blogger morgor said...

I don't think cannabis is good for you.

But i think taking prozac and eating 5 mcdonalds a day is probably worse.

People should be free to grow natural herbs if they so wish as long as they're not trying to make kids smoke it or something ridiculous like that.

11:09 a.m.  
Blogger Twenty Major said...

I honestly don't believer there's any way of justifying a ban on cannabis while tobacco and alcohol are on sale and providing massive income for governments.

I think the links between smoking joints and harder drugs are spurious. I think it has more to do with who you are, your friends are, where you live etc.

11:16 a.m.  
Blogger JL Pagano said...

You have to appreciate the position of the gardai when it comes to things like this. If Joe Soap is growing cannabis for personal use and not doing anything else to catch their attention, the chances are nothing will ever come of it. Having said that, you should never hear a garda saying something like "It's ok in some circumstances", even though it is. These seizures were made because these operations were fully operational businesses. I very much doubt too much police time would be spent chasing after an individual unless it was a path to catching them or someone close to them for something bigger.

So I guess that would mean my answer would be no.

11:17 a.m.  
Blogger orlaith said...

I voted no but and believe me I used to have a really liberal attitude about smoking cannabis but over the years I've seen a couple of cases where regular dope users ended up with mental illnesses, schizophrenia in one case and bi-polar depression the other. In both cases it was attributable to long-term cannabis use. Some people smoke and it doesn't affect them for sure, but for others, it's dangerous, perhaps they have an underlying problem or predisposition. The doctors reckon that it's because the cannabis or skunk that's used nowadays is much stronger than that used in the '70s and contains harmful components that mess with the brain's chemistry.

11:22 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Allow me to play Devil's advocate for moment. If people grow their own plants, wouldn't they know what went into their drug? Would it not lesson the chance of buying more potentially harmful variations? I don't know if it would or not, I'm just throwing it out there.

11:39 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, it is too potent and alcohol is bad enough. Plus it depletes peoples brain cells and Lord kniow there are enough think cunts about the place. Get rid of personal use altogether and make it available on perscription for MS and Cancer sufferes.


11:40 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I means to start my last comment with, 'that a good point Pat and Orlaith, about mental harm...'

11:40 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I don't suppose Nonny you CAN get use rid of personal use all together. Not likely to happen anytime soon, as JL said, most people growing their own don't actually come to the attention of the Gardai.

11:42 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Wouldn’t they know what went into their drug? "

No, mushrooms grow of there own free will out my back garden and I am pretty sure that should a body eat them they would give weed a run for its money but I am not sure because I am not a scientist. I would imagine abolishing personal use is quite probable with so much controversy over drugs at the moment. Bring it on and let kids know Drugs are bad.


11:57 a.m.  
Anonymous sheepworrier said...

There was a recent huge haul up here by the PSNI, again involving Asian gangs. They were caught due to suspiciously large electricity usage in residential locations (for the heatlamps).
People do grow their own here, but it's a lengthly process and not exactly cost effective. Pretty much everything that gets sold in Belfast comes via Scotland and is shite quality compared to Dublin or London.

11:57 a.m.  
Anonymous sheepworrier said...

Nonny, I'd doubt the mushrooms growing in your garden are the hallucenogic variety - they're quite difficult to find.

12:00 p.m.  
Anonymous sheepworrier said...

hallucenogic - hallucenogenic - my keyboard turned ito an elephant for a second and I had to type on it with a brush shaft...

12:06 p.m.  
Blogger Robert Hogan said...

I wrote about the drugs quandry before. My argument is that at the moment, cannabis leads (in some cases) to harder drugs because, at the moment, you have to buy it from a drug dealer, who invariably sells harder drugs.

The biggest gateway drug, according to research is alcohol, but that won't be banned because it is taxed and profitable.

If they grow it themselves, or it is legalised, I am all for it and it would completely ruin the wealth of certain gangs. The reason the mafia became rich was because of prohibition, once that ceased they had to move into other areas like drugs. Legalise drugs and the thugs that terrorise most of Limerick City and certain parts of Dublin have one less avenue of revenue.

As for the possible downsides, I know cigarettes are bad for me, I still choose to smoke. I know that is almost facetious in its simplicity, but most of the highs in life are associated with an element of danger.

12:06 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They look very much like the ones my brother and his pals used to harvest up the Dublin mountains. One time after a musher party he thought sombody was chasing him and ran really fast into a concreate wall. He split his head open and my parents thought he just had a fever.


12:09 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Some good points Robert, and welcome.

12:24 p.m.  
Blogger orlaith said...

That's a good point FMC, I mean if you can grow it yourself then you know it's not mixed with anything nasty. I keep changing my opinion on this, I know that by going down the road to legalisation it would eradicate all the druglords and criminality etc. I suppose, by legalising something it is akin to giving it a health stamp or something. But perhaps, like cigarettes it could be taxed heavily and come with a health warning.

1:40 p.m.  
Anonymous Sniffle&Cry said...

Remember Tiede Herrima? Well, the Guards were doing a house to house search, sweeping through Limerick city and my pal was worried. So that year we had an early harvest . It was bizarre carting pre-levy Dunnes Stores bags full of the stuff around the town, saluting the Guards as they swept up my mates road. Don’t legalise it, the crack was mighty.

2:00 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cannabis causing mood and personality disorders? I think not. Correlation does not causation make. Those I have known with true drug dependencies of any kind, including cannabis, have had some variety of preexisting mental illness. Certainly it doesn't help one's depression or anxiety to get stoned all the time--I can see making an argument that regular smoking can contribute to keeping you in a rut, but it won't put you in the rut to begin with.

And I agree with Robert as to the gateway drug issue. Those looking for harder drugs will find them; all but a very, very few of the pot-smokers I have known never went past the "gate."

I don't know how I'd legalize it exactly, but I'd start with some kind of decriminalization of growing/possession for personal use.

2:10 p.m.  
Anonymous sheepworrier said...

Speakin of mind-altering substances - 1 hour to beer o'clock!

4:00 p.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

We must be the only adults in Canada who don't smoke it. Weed acts as an urban perfume over here. Every park in the city has someone blazing.

4:09 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Beer O'clock! God damn kickboxing can raise a thirst like no other.
Have a great weekend everyone.

6:35 p.m.  
Blogger Manuel said...

no from me too......dope smokers are such a bore....I wnat less ddope smoking chefs not more...selfish? oh hell yes....

1:13 a.m.  
Blogger Gerry said...

I did grow cannibas, but due to a). buying crap seeds and b). using very dodgy home made compost, I ended up with very bad tomatoes.
3 months of lovingly watering and hiding my babies and I end up with 3 half dead tomato plants

7:25 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My favourite part of that report is the sentence that begins "An intelligence-driven search operation led gardai..."

They really should try that more often.

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